In this first part of the autumn early review series I will be looking at the highly anticipated 86 as well as the comedy/horror that is Mierko-chan. We will then tee off with the latest season of Yuuki Yuuna which will be for those who like their magical girls to have a tinge of darkness. Check out my thoughts and see if any any of this lot take your fancy! If nothing sounds too appealing then not to worry there are plenty of other reviews to come. ;)

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86 Part 2

The second season 86 kicks off right where the first ended so you gotta watch the first piece to get a clue what is going on here. If that is too much the lowdown for 86 is that the anime tells the story about the conflict between the Republic of Magonlia and the Gilead empire. The twist in this anime is that underclass, the 86s, are the ones doing all the fighting while the social elite live a life of bless largely ignorant of the horrors of war. This anime tackles social inequalities, racism and to a certain extent genocide/ethnic cleansing. Despite the deep topics it is not too dark so don’t expect getting depressed watching the thing. The first season was a good story but was hampered with its slow pacing and lack of worldbuilding.

Anyhow one of my bugbears of season one seems to be immediately addressed as we get to learn more about the Giad empire which was a detail that was largely MIA in season one. What I particularly liked about this was the fact we got to see how society in this empire works which did much to humanise the other side the conflict. Seeing how people think and interact makes the conflict more realistic but more important it added an extra twist to the overall story narrative. These developments are a breath of fresh air and gives me hope that the story will finally kick on!

The second episode gives us more insight into the Giad empire as this time we witness how mainstream society operates. It is a novel experience but after a time we learn that old habits die hard as the 86 crew soon itch to finish unresolved issues. Not sure, this was best the decision but I like the move as it will push the narrative forward. What was also interesting was the new character that joined the gang. Not only was the character entertaining but her newfound powers not to mention motives means I can see a conflict with Lena coming soon. That will bring some fireworks! Very promising start to 86 Part 2 so I give this a 7.5/10 for now.



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Mieruko-chan

Mieruko-chan is a horror/comedy series staring Miko as the girl who has suddenly gained the ability to see ghosts! Now this series is billed as a horror comedy show but when watching the season opener, I did get more of a horror vibe to the story. The tone is set in the opening scene when weird stuff happens but you are not really sure what happened exactly. This dynamic continues in the following scenes and it works well in building suspense and anticipation.

This spooky beginning continues for time and culminates in a scene outside when you realise something is finally up. The comedy aspect of the show does begin to rear its head towards the end of the episode when we see poor Miko beginning to lose her nerve.

The charades continue into the second episode as the ghosts start appearing with increasing frequency. What’s more these apparitions appear right beside her friend, Hana making it extremely difficult for Miko to ignore their presence! This goes on for several scenes as the pair are embroiled with various spirits! It is funny seeing Miko reactions which is in stark contrast to the oblivious Hana. I should say though the fanservice in episode two is heavier than the opener.

The episode ends on a somewhat different tone as the humour is replaced with something that is filled with tension and a wholesome moment. This twist at the end makes you ponder if we will see more of this in subsequent episodes.

On the whole it is a decent start but I felt the first episode was the better of the two as it built the suspense better with it faints. We got less of that in the second episode and if the pattern in the second episode maintained for the rest of the show, then things would get repetitive. If some other element is added then this will be worth a watch. I give a 6.5/10 for now.

One final note there is some fanservice particularly in the second episode. It is does not get in the way of the comedy or the horror but it is definitely there. If you have a low tolerance for fanservice then you may want to give this a miss.




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Yuuki Yuuna is a Hero: The Great Mankai Chapter

Yuuki Yuuna is a dark magical series but since it has been time since I saw the previous seasons my of this show are hazy at best. What I do recall though is when Yuuki and transform they gain great powers but as is often the case in the dark magical genre; there is a hidden cost to their powers. The first two seasons are good so I would recommend you watch it if you a connoisseur of magical girls.

As for the season opener this was really a feel-good episode as we see the girls let off some steam by playing some ROCK music and pigging out in a karaoke club as part of their afterparty! The fun doesn’t’ stop there as they play a mock outdoor shooting game which is topped off with a girl’s night in the camping. It was a crammed day and we see the girls having fun for a change. You just know however the fun won’t last and sure enough near the end a foreboding event occurs which is bound to turn the girl’s life’s upside down.

The second episode took me for a loop as the first episode cliff-hanger is largely ignored as we are thrust back in time and are introduced to a trio of girls; Karin, Mebuki and Yumiko. These girls are all competing to become the new hero that will protect mankind. There is a big competition and the conclusion to this segment is explosive. In the final half of this episode, we are treated to a big battle skirmish which underlines the feeling that the supposed saviours of the world are ruthless and quite possibly hold ulterior motives. This episode took on a more serious and dark tone than what we got before but this contrast in tone and direction makes it hard to judge where this series is going. Will it follow the new cast or will we go back to the main girls or perhaps we will get a mish mash? It’s anyone case but what we got was decent 6/10 for me.
 
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